New Spring 2014 #4

Appropriate, since we get some stargazing in the first episode.
Appropriate, since we get some stargazing in the first episode.

After all that sports stuff to round out the last post, it’s a relief to get back to a show like Gokukoku no Brynhildr, with it’s weirdo OP showing cute girls with various amounts of blood on them. It it we meet Ryouta, a high school boy still mourning the loss of his childhood friend Kuroneko, when she was going to show him an alien. He blames himself for the incident and now spends his spare time looking for replacement aliens, or girls, because a grown-up version of Kuroneko does the transfer student thing. Soon she’s going around saving lives, like smashing the pump that the girl had her knee stuck in underwater (the thought of getting a hose for her to breathe was beyond their minds), and later warning Ryouta that he’s going to die if he doesn’t catch the last bus, or if he does catch it, well, it changes.

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So we have some mysteries afoot, like the origin of this new Kuroha Neko (who apparently is not the girl or she had cosmetic surgery), what she’s on the lam from, who was at the other end of the walkie-talkie, and can you be called a witch if you get implants. I’m not terribly interested yet. Ryouko is a bit of a wuss but very smart, something that takes Kuroha aback when it looked like she was going to win all the battles, and while he still mourns her little friend, he’s not a complete idiot about it. The story didn’t really grip me, however. Once I get an answer to a few of those mysteries I fear I might grow tired of this series, but we’ll see.

Blinding light through trees has no significance to this show that I can think of.
Blinding light through trees has no significance to this show that I can think of.

Isshuukan Friends could be one of the better new series this spring, or it could be one of the most maddening. We have a boy named Hase who wants to get to know a classmate, Fujimiya, better, in spite of her rebuffs, and during a sequence of lunches eaten together on the roof, manages to do so, only to learn that her memories get reset every Monday so she can’t remember anything about the people close to her. In other words, their whole relationship has to restart every Monday.

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In other words, this is about one person who has a problem that makes her unable to reach out, and a boy who wants her to try, anyway. But mishandle the situation and you might wind up with a variation on endless eight. Also, you can’t help but analyze the situation; what can Hase do to make the changeover easier? What can her classmates do? What do her parents do? We already know they’re going to sidestep these problems if possible, hence the “… except my family” loophole, in order to keep the show focused on Fujimiya and Hase and not the real implications of her memory loss. But a lot of people, including me, won’t be able to help ourselves. “Why doesn’t Hase do _____ on Monday, or why doesn’t Fujimiya do _____ on Sundays? That will save them both time!” I’ll do my best to contain myself. In the meantime, I like the look of the show, the character designs especially. The two kids have a nice chemistry, and I like how Hase handles every setback, even before he knows the truth. We’ll see how their second week goes.

Typical cityscape, again signifying nothing specific, except we're in a city.
Typical cityscape, again signifying nothing specific, except we’re in a city.

About ten minutes into Kanojo ga Flag o Oraretara I was worried. The plotting was completely unrealistic. Our hero, Souta, was telling Namami his life story, concerning being able to see flags, and the dark curses that hang over his head, so that’s why he shuns everyone, you know, stuff that you wouldn’t tell strange girls even if they do insist with force like Namami did. Stuff you might save for later in the episode, or an episode or two down the road, or, if it’s Nisekoi, maybe in the first season. They’d been in school together less than a day, and they were acting like people who had shared a lot together. Namami had done nothing to deserve this sensitive information apart from bugging him a lot. Then Akane shows up.

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There’s nothing much about her, I don’t even like the character that much, but she brought some goofiness that the show at that time desperately needed. All this talk about seeing flags and knowing when people will die, and Souta’s cutting himself off from friends because of it, all blown away. There was something about seeing all those flags popping out of her head like some crazy headdress that I had to laugh at. And unlike Namani, who used force and threats, Akane defeated Souta with sheer indefatigable kindness. I’m still plenty worried about this series, but they brought out a sense of fun that I hope they can mix well with the sad parts.

Boring sky.
Boring sky.

Mangaka-san to Assistant-san to has a manga-ka named Aito, and the girls who work with him/are disgusted by him. Short gags. In the first one, Aito manipulates his assistant Sahoto into fondling her own boobs “for research.” Later he talks at length about panty shots with Sahoto and his editor, Mihari, and later runs into Mihari in a mall and embarrasses her by revealing her cup size.

I did like this moment.
I did like this moment.

At least Mihari can punch him. I feel sorrier for Sahoto, who’s an assistant and probably feels she has no choice but to humiliate herself for the sake of her job. Some people might argue that Aito is an innocent spirit, not fuly understanding what he’s asking for, but all I see is a calculating schemer who knows how to use his power and talent to manipulate women around him. So we’ll be seeing this sort of thing every week? Not me.

Those are posts, or drapes, and we're running through them.
Those are posts, or drapes, and we’re running through them.

Finally for this installment we have Mahou Shoujo Taisen, a shortie, where we meet Aoba Naruko from Miyagi Prefecture, and watch her not be a very good magical girl for about five minutes until she pisses off a cop and gets hauled away. It’s cute and over with quickly. The draw will be to see how each prefecture will be presented. The problem is there are probably a lot of cultural references, oddities about the prefecture, that I don’t even know I’m missing. But it’s harmless, and, like I said, short.

Miyagii prefecture's proud representative!
Miyagii prefecture’s proud representative!
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2 thoughts on “New Spring 2014 #4

  1. I wanted to watch Mahou Shoujo Taisen to see how each prefecture was going to be shown – I’ve been to about 20 of them myself now, so I was actually kinda excited – but a quick look at Wikipedia seems to indicate that there are only going to be 7 prefectures represented, which is a bit disappointing.

    • I didn’t know that. It IS disappointing. I was hoping for my home prefecture, but it’s not on the list. Maybe the others will get cameos or something.

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